Is Social BPM A Methodology, A Technology, Or Just A Lot Of Hype?

Over the past three months, I've been heads down working on our upcoming "Forrester Wave™ For Human-Centric BPM Suites, Q3 2010" report.  I've also been on the road over the past five weeks attending and presenting at different BPM vendor conferences - gotta love Vegas!  I must admit I have barely had time to keep tabs on my different BPM tribes - blog sites, Twitter conversations, and LinkedIn discussions.  I've been checking in here and there around different camp fires and adding a little spark occasionally when something interesting caught my eye.  

But today, I ran across a simmering debate around social BPM on different blog sites, here and here.  Seems like this is fast becoming the hottest topic in BPM.  Guess I shouldn't be surprised since I helped drive the conversation around social BPM over the last year.  It's very good to see the conversation evolve and also good to see different perspectives on how social can help improve all aspects of BPM initiatives.

Earlier this month I delivered a presentation on social BPM at IBM's Impact 2010 event. This presentation provided the most up to date perspective on how we see customers using and applying social techniques and methodologies to BPM initiatives. During the session, we framed social BPM in the following way:

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Pega Announces Plans To Buy Chordiant: Maybe The Mad Hatter Isn't So Mad After All, Just Misunderstood.

Pega's announcement last week to acquire Chordiant sparked an interesting debate within the BPM world: Is Pega becoming a CRM vendor?  Is Pega moving away from BPM?  Is this a move by Pega to better connect customer experience and business process improvement initiatives? 

Over the weekend I took my daughter to see "Alice in Wonderland"  and couldn't resist comparing Johnny Depp's Mad Hatter character to Pega's recent move to acquire Chordiant.  For those of you who haven't seen the movie, it's not as weird as the usual Tim Burton movie; but the Mad Hatter character is a little disturbing, with his rhymes and riddles that keep you guessing at his true meaning.

For many process professionals, Pega's recent move was just as confusing as having a conversation with the Mad Hatter.  What exactly is he trying to say anyway?

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Podcast: Challenges For Process Professionals Leading Process Initiatives In 2010

Our latest featured podcast is Clay Richardson's "Challenges For Process Professionals Leading Process Initiatives In 2010".

In this podcast, BP&A Senior Analyst Clay Richardson walks through five key challenges that process professionals need to address to be successful with business process management in 2010. Topics include lean principles and lean thinking, effectively connecting process initiatives with value drivers, the importance of data, and process based management.

We look forward to your questions and comments.

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Storming The Bastille: A Populist Uprising In The BPM World?

During a recent internal jam session, Connie Moore and I were jamming on big trends we see coming together in the BPM space.  Much of our discussion centered on social BPM and process professionals wresting control from IT over their process improvement initiatives.  By the end of the jam session, Connie and I formed a stark picture of business process professionals and business users in open revolt against IT – pitchforks in hand – demanding greater collaboration and inclusion across all phases of the process lifecycle.

 

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How To Have Fun On A Snowy Day: Tweet Jam With Business Process Pros (#bpmjam)

Wow! What a blast!  I just finished hosting Forrester's first "tweet jam" with Connie Moore, Derek Miers, Jim Kobielus, and Alex Peters.  To my knowledge this was the first time a virtual jam session has been hosted on Twitter by an analyst firm. 

My heart is still racing from the flurry of questions and responses packed into a short two hour window this afternoon. A total of 69 participants generated over 500 tweets around our discussion topic: "Top Challenges Facing Business Process Professionals In 2010".


During the session, we covered a wide array of BPM challenges.  Specific challenges that generated the most tweets included:

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Forrester Tweet Jam Session: Top Challenges Facing Business Process Professionals In 2010 (#bpmjam)

Forrester analysts will host a “Tweet Jam” on February 10, 2010, from 1:00 – 3:00 PM ET to answer questions from Business Process professionals and App Dev professionals about top challenges facing their process improvement initiatives.  During this interactive Jam session, Forrester analysts will share the results of our groundbreaking “Business Process Professional Role Deep Dive” research that uncovered major trends and critical challenges facing aspiring process improvement programs.

Key questions we will tackle during this Tweet Jam include:

1. Which role(s) should lead your business process initiative?

2. What are the best practices for establishing your BPM COE?

3. Do yourtraditional business analysts have what it takes to drive BPM initiatives?

4. How heavily should you rely on your software vendor for project implementation?

5. How should you connect your EA and BPM initiatives?

6. Which process improvement methodology (Six Sigma, Lean, TQM) is best for your initiative?

7. How should you incorporate BPMN modeling into your process initiative?

8. How should you measure the progress or success of your process initiative?

9  What’s the typical sizeand composition of process improvement teams?

10. How should process improvement connect to master data management?

11. How do you think Social BPM will impact your organization?

The session will be hosted by Clay Richardson, Connie Moore, CraigLe Clair, Alex Peters, John Rymer, and Ken Vollmer. To join this interactive conversation, simply tune in to the #bpmjam hash tag on Twitter or follow the analysts that will host and moderate the session.

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Progress Software Acquires Savvion to Create Dynamic Business Platform for Process Professionals

Business Process professionals are scratching their heads at today's announcement by Progress Software to acquire Savvion.  Process professionals are asking what exactly does this deal mean - for Progress and Savvion's combined customer portfolios and for the broader BPM market. 

Connie Moore and I sat down earlier today to record a video blog post on what this deal means for Business Process professionals and to the broader BPM market.

 

In our video blog post (also posted on Forrester's YouTube Channel), we outlined three key themes driving the Progress/Savvion deal and how Process pros should view and respond to the latest round of acquisitions in the BPM space:  Process pros should:
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Challenges For Process Professionals Leading Process Initiatives In 2010

In this podcast, Clay Richardson walks through five key challenges that process professionals need to address to be successful with business process management in 2010. Topics include lean principles and lean thinking, effectively connecting process initiatives with value drivers, the importance of data, and process-based management.

http://www.forrester.com/role_based/images/author/imported/forresterDotCom/Podcasts/BPA/Clay%20Richardson_Top%20Challenges%20For%20Process%20Professionals%20In%202010.mp3

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Did IBM Buy Lombardi To Raise Their Profile With The Business?

 

New_photo by Clay Richardson

For many, IBM's announcement to acquire Lombardi came as a little pre-Christmas surprise. Over the past 24 hours, I've heard several arguments for and against this deal being a game changer.  Ultimately, if you look at this deal strictly as a software acquisition, then it presents many potential problems and hurdles for both IBM and Lombardi:

  • IBM's BPM portfolio is already confusing to customers, with customers and prospects struggling to reconcile whether they should buy Websphere Process Server or FileNet P8 (not to mention the peripheral workflow capabilities provided by Lotus).  From a software perspective, this acquisition makes IBM's BPM maze even more intimidating to navigate.

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Podcast: Forge Your Lean Process Improvement Game Plan

Our latest featured podcast is Clay Richardson's "Forge Your Lean Process Improvement Game Plan".

In this podcast, BP&A Senior Analyst Clay Richardson covers how to deliver the impact and bang of process improvement without the traditional bloat usually associated with process improvement. Clay covers his framework for aligning an organization’s BPM approach and strategic intent in order to improve business processes and maximize profits.

 

 

 

 

 

We look forward to your questions and comments.

 

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